Deputies Find Explosives at Sex Offender's Home

By: Erica Rakow Email
By: Erica Rakow Email

A Panama City Beach man is behind bars tonight after deputies found several highly explosive items in his home.

During a residence check of registered sex offender, John Eugene Barta's home on Friday night, probation officers found potentially explosive materials.

The Bay County Sheriff's Office bomb squad and special investigations officers responded and found 8 to 10 pounds of high explosives and 30 to 50 detonators.

Deputies evacuated all of the neighbors and closed off the street from about 6 until 12 a.m. Friday night.

“This was not fertilizer. This was not simple chemicals or components that you can buy in a hardware store, any regular store you have to have a special license, a federal license to purchase this type of materials. They must be stored in a registered facility, especially constructed to federal guidelines, strict federal guidelines and inspected periodically by ATF so no, he wasn't storing them properly and at this time the question remains how he even came to own these components," said Bay County Sheriff’s Office Spokesperson, Ruth Corley.

To put into perspective, Corley says if an explosion had occurred, it would have removed the entire back of the house where the materials were improperly stored and probably would have exploded into the neighbors yards.

The bomb squad disposed of the materials. Barta currently faces drug charges, violation of probation and charges for the explosives will be added.


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Comments are posted from viewers like you and do not always reflect the views of this station.
  • by Surprised Location: PC on Sep 7, 2010 at 10:44 AM
    You mean another criminal was given early release and committed another crime?? When are we going to stop letting criminals back out on the streets to commit more crimes?
  • by Mike on Sep 7, 2010 at 06:42 AM
    Robin, The Sex offender is just getting what he is due and I hope death finds him soon, It will save us some tax dollars! I am glad you have never had to deal with someone like that or you would not feel sad for him
  • by Robin Location: PC on Sep 6, 2010 at 09:56 PM
    So the fact that this man is a sex offender makes this story more interesting? Really? The explosives on it's own didn't make it exciting enough? So this is how this news and the media classify people, by their criminal history? So if this man was a convicted car thief would the title of this story read "Deputies Find Explosives at Car Theif's Home"? No, but I could understand if the man was a convicted arsonist, now that would make sense. One thing is sad for sure, no matter how this man will sucumb to his death, the headline will read "Sex Offender Dies"
  • by Anonymous on Sep 5, 2010 at 06:11 PM
    "They must be stored in a registered facility".... they were,.... at a registered sex offenders home!
  • by Linda Location: Tulsa, OK on Sep 5, 2010 at 09:28 AM
    If this guy wasn't on parole, law enforcement would not have discovered it. I've said in the past, "It's only a matter of time, before someone says "enough is enough." You can oppress a class of people only so far and someone will make a loud statement. I believe it's only a matter of time and that time is getting short! Someone, somewhere, is giving it some serious thought! I feel it in my bones
  • by sharon Location: pcb on Sep 5, 2010 at 06:54 AM
    Barta has owned that home since 1995. He also has a business on Hwy 98 and owns several properties. Question is are there more explosives?
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